For some time, I have tried to draw a star map for my story. Primarily for myself to understand the relative positions of stars, plot interstellar travels, and find home (and colony) stars of alien civilisations. I'm using MS Excel for this, gathering data from Atlas of the Universe, Wikipedia and other sources, and I also use Wolfram Alpha for many calculations. I even wrote a formula to convert galactic coordinates into cartesian, following the advice I got here.

The problem I keep encountering is that none of the graphs I try adequately display these data. Even xy-scatter with cartesian coordinates with maximum sample size doesn't look like fitting to reality (until now, I have made two graphs, with x and y, and with x and z coordinates, working on a graph with y and z). I can't find a graph that would display galactic longitude and distance like on a compass, which would be ideal.

Any advice on how to solve this issue?

  • $\begingroup$ Is the 3D plot type for 12.5 and 250 LY from the link you give what you look for - or what type of star map? Or what projection of galactic coordinates or whatever local cartesion coordinates do you envision? $\endgroup$ Jun 15 at 17:24
  • $\begingroup$ @planetmaker What I would like to see is close to this, but flat 2D as viewed from up, and reference data is shown upon moving the cursor on the particular dot. Or to choose a few stars to have data remarks displayed. For example, if my voyagers would take the route from this star to that, what other stars would be nearby? $\endgroup$ Jun 16 at 6:11
  • $\begingroup$ Another problem with those particular visualisations is the small picture size. $\endgroup$ Jun 16 at 6:13


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